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Hegel Super Headphone Amplifier / DAC

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Norwegian Hi-Fi manufacturer Hegel has released their first portable DAC/Headphone Amp, the "Hegel Super". I am really eager to try this one. Below 1 ohm output impedance should suit my low impedance headphones and hopefully IEMs aswell. Looks are at least super :-)





"Hear what your headphones actually sounds like, with the new Hegel headphone amplifier. Milled out of one solid piece of brushed aluminum, it is a beautiful piece on its own, but the real beauty lies in the sound. Simply connect the SUPER to your computer, connect your headphones to the SUPER and let Hegel’s Reference amplifier technology give you an instant sound upgrade. A much richer sound, far deeper and better bass response and more gain. Why is this so? The answer is complex, but there are two major obstacles to getting the optimal sound from your headphones. The SUPER addresses both. 

The first reason you should have a look at the Hegel SUPER has to do with noise. No modern computers are actually designed to sound good. They are designed for speed and versatility, and create a lot of background noise. Not so much that it is audible in itself, but enough to blur the finer details of the music - making everything sound a bit dull and flat. The Hegel SUPER uses proprietary technology, designed in-house by Hegel, that dramatically reduces the noise – allowing you to hear everything there is to hear.
Secondly, the different headphones on the market have very diverse impedances and are notoriously difficult tasks for an amplifier. The result is that a normal headphone amplifier will act as an equalizer and sound significantly different, depending on which headphone you connect. Hegel’s Reference amplifier technology ensures that the SUPER plays with exactly the same sound signature on all headphones: No sound signature at all.
This is why we say that when your headphones are more than just a gem to you – you should try the SUPER"

Technical Details

Digital inputs: USB micro 
Outputs: mini-jack (analog) + optical mini-jack (digital) 
USB interface: up to 24 bit / 96 kHz, plug & play 
Noise floor: -140dB 
Output impedance: Below 1 ohm 
Dimensions: 1,6 cm x 4,1cm x 8,2cm (HxWxD) 
Dimensions (US): 0.6” x 1.6” x 3.2” (HxWxD)



Edited by HiFiRobot - 11/8/13 at 3:53am

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post #2 of 11

I ordered mine today, it should arrive later this week. I'll try to post my impressions once i have given it a good listen...

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
That's great. Looking forward to that. No shop where I live seem to have it yet. What headphones will you be using?
post #4 of 11

I recently bought the ADL H118 headphones, so I will use these cans for testing. There weren't any listings in the Netherlands either, but i approached a Hegel reseller. To my supprise it was actually already available. Strange though how little info can be found on this product...

post #5 of 11

A first review has shown up: http://www.enjoythemusic.com/magazine/equipment/1213/hegel_super_usb_dac.htm


I like the fact iit seems to have good differentiation and good midrange, but the lack of low-bass is somewhat worrying. My Super is expecting to arrive within a few days, so I can hear for myself...  

post #6 of 11

My Super has just finally arrived! Looks great! I'll post my impressions when I have given it a good listen....

post #7 of 11

Very interested in this - the newest Hegel amps (H300 and H30) are amazing value for money. Only annoying that they did not include spdif and a volume knub... Is it relying on something like the dragonfly or does it use the volume control within the PC?

post #8 of 11

I dont know about the DragonFly, but the Hegel uses the volume control of the PC. With my 68ohm ADL's i have the volume control at 15%, so I guess it has enough power to drive almost any headphone.

post #9 of 11

I must say that i am really happy with my Super. Everything is so clear, great amounts of detail and clarity. And combined with the ADL H118, there is a good amount of depth in the sound. You can really sense where the musicans are located in some recordings (Norah Jones 24/192). but also youtube streams sound a lotter better. the review below sums it up nicely i think:



post #10 of 11

A newbie to the world of headphone listening...  but an audiophile since 2007.  I have a Hegel based 2-channel system and took the chance with the Hegel Super as to be able to travel without musical compromise.  Unbelievable!  It powered my B&W P7's and a pair of Denon D7000's without issue or stress.  It really had a lot of the traits of most Hegel pieces (H80 and HD11) being musical and true to the source and material playback.  The bass can be lean(er) than some amps I've auditioned but w/ low end heavy cans like the P7 and D7000; a nice balance and separation with great musical detail and just the right amount of warmth but always musical.


A happy listener....


Downside; even with the lowered price of $299 to compete with other portable DAC/amps- you'd think they'd include a USB cable w/ the micro/mini end.  Kind of a buzz kill to get it home and only have to go out and fish for a specialty cable.

post #11 of 11

Awaiting a pair of Fostex TH600's.  Can't wait....  Still impressed with the Hegel performance.  Lacks a little low frequency extension and very transparent and has perforned well with my Grado 225i's.  I am hoping the bass ext of the Fostex will be a good match.

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